An American business school granted a heritage site on Mount Davis for a one-off premium of HK$1,000, opened a temporary campus in Cyberport yesterday.
The renovation of the 35,000 sq ft venue on the sixth floor of Cyberport block 2 for the University of Chicago Booth School of Business in Asia cost about HK$46.5 million.
The campus would house the school's executive MBA programme until about 2018, when it was expected to move into the former detention centre on Victoria Road, deputy dean Robert Gertner said.
"We want to attract students all over Asia and we feel Hong Kong is an ideal location to achieve that," he said.
The rent of the site remains undisclosed on grounds of contract confidentiality.
The 16-week programme, costing each student HK$1.2 million, has admitted 86 applicants from Asia.
They include nine Hong Kong residents and 11 from the mainland, who combined make up the biggest group.
There are also eight Indian citizens, seven South Koreans, seven Japanese and 14 Americans living in Asia.
The school said the average age of the students was 38 and they came from companies involved in 38 types of business, including investment banking, the brokerage sector, energy, petroleum and investment management.
The Cyberport campus includes a multi-purpose function room, a 100-seat auditorium, 16 study rooms, a faculty office and lounge areas. The school will host various events open for public registration.
It will also organise nondegree programmes costing an average of HK$60,000 and lasting up to a week.
The school moved its only Asia campus from Singapore to Hong Kong this year after the government granted it the 17,000 sq ft grade-three historic building last year on a 10-year renewable lease, pending clearance from town planning and other bodies.
Gertner said the design of the future campus would be completed by the end of the year.
Students in the school's three campuses in Chicago, London and Hong Kong will take the same courses, be taught by the same faculty and get the same degree. Hong Kong students will also spend three weeks in Chicago and one in London.